Update from Africa Nazarene University

December 4, 2008 at 3:34 am 1 comment

Greetings from the outskirts of Ongata Rongai!
“The people walking in darkness have seen a great light; on those living in the land of the shadow of death a light has dawned…For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders.  And he will be call Wonderful Counseling, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.  Of the increase of his government and peace there will be no end” (Isaiah 9:2, 6-7).
The wind is strong, but the sun is shining brightly as the temperature pushes upwards toward the 90 degree mark.  I guess it’s a perfect contrast to what many are facing during this time of year.  Another thing that makes the day beautiful is the fact that all of our exams are over, the tests are marked and turned in, and we are in packing mode for traveling.  Finishing a trimester and a year always provides a sense of relief and accomplishment, but this one feels especially good as we looking forward to seeing family and friends again.  At 1:00 p.m. today (5:00 a.m. EST) we leave the campus and head for the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport where our flight begins at 4:30 p.m. (8:30 a.m. EST) to Dubai, London, Atlanta, and Tampa.  It will be about a 36 hour journey and I know we will be tired when we finally land – hopefully at 8:20 p.m. (EST) on Friday.  At least we will be in Florida first and gradually break into the cold as we drive north over the next couple of weeks.
I was privileged to worship at one of our newest preaching points on the Nairobi District last Sunday.  The group at Maili Saba (which means 7 mile) started worshipping together about three months ago and they took up their present location about three weeks ago.  One of our students served as my guide to get me there and as my interpreter (interrupter) for the message.  The whole service was in Kiswahli so I didn’t get much out of the music, but it was an interesting experience as the only instrument we had was a hand-held drum and an electric cord from a nearby building provided power for the sound system.  The room was only about 20’x20′ and had rusty tin and bedsheets and tarps held to a rope by clothes pins for walls, but seemingly it was important for us to have microphones – and have them cranked up.  I guess the idea here is to preach and sing to those who are outside more than inside in the hopes of getting someone else to come and join the service.  The church that was meeting about fifty yards away had the same idea, so I preached through the battle of dualing microphones.  I’m not sure who won, but it was a very different experience than what I am used to.  It was a sincere group there that I had fellowship with and I hope that in the days to come they will become a strong and thriving congregation.
So on Monday and Tuesday we had our exams and today we are wrapping up things in our offices and getting things packed.  I know Mary Jane will be especially happy to get on the plane, lean her seat back, and catch up on some much needed rest.  Now if I can just remember how to drive on the right side of the road we should be in good shape when we finally land and get our rental car.
So I will sign off for now.  Please keep us in your prayers are we travel.  One never knows what is going to happen next in this 21st century battle of good vs. evil.  We do know we are on the winning side however and rest securely in that thought.  So until we make contact with you again…be blessed and be a blessing!

December 4 Fly out from Nairobi, Kenya to the US
December 7 (am) Clearwater, Florida First Church of the Nazarene
December 7 (pm) Clearwater, Florida Central Church of the Nazarene
December 9 Gathering with friends/supporters at Fort Myers, Florida First Church of the Nazarene
December 10 Archer, Florida Church of the Nazarene
December 14 (am) Live Oak, Florida Church of the Nazarene
December 14 (pm) Dublin, Georgia First Church of the Nazarene
December 15 Wrightsville, Georgia Church of the Nazarene
December 16 Albany, Georgia Grace Church of the Nazarene
December 17 Gainesville, Georgia First Church of the Nazarene
December 21 (am) Middletown, Indiana Church of the Nazarene
December 21 (pm) Dunkirk, Indiana Church of the Nazarene
December 28 (am) New Albany, Indiana Christ Community Church of the Nazarene
December 28 (pm) Mackey, Indiana Church of the Nazarene
January 4 (am) Muncie, Indiana Southside Church of the Nazarene
January 4 (pm) Anderson, Indiana Southdale Church of the Nazarene
January 5 Fly out from Indianapolis, Indiana to Kenya

Randy and Mary Jane James

Africa Nazarene University

Nairobi, Kenya

Entry filed under: Uncategorized.

Update from Africa Nazarene University Update from the USA

1 Comment Add your own

  • 1. Carol Sterner  |  December 12, 2008 at 3:33 am

    Hi Mary Jane,

    This is your long-ago, far-away friend from way back when…Carol (Schull) Sterner. While I was home with Mom at Thanksgiving, I read your newsletter to her and saw your schedule…even wrote down your email address but alas I totally forgot it when I got home (got back in the business of Christmas stuff, chemotherapy for my husband, ultrasounds of a new grandbaby on the way, etc.). But today I received the newsletter from Selma Church which gave their new web address and I went on to check it out…and connected with your website through theirs.

    It’s so great to see a picture of you and know that you are out there in the trenches for Jesus! We have been “side-lined” for a very long time. My husband took disability leave because of seizures in 1980 and then in 2004 had a whole year of treatment for colon cancer. It came back and spread to the liver in June, 2007, and we’ve been battling ever since. We have a round of chemotherapy tomorrow (12th).

    On the brighter side, we have a little grandson, Carter, born in April…he’s in Washington state so I’ve only got to see him twice…but of course he’s the cutest little guy in the whole wide world! And we have another grandchild due in July from our other daughter (Christy) here in Tulsa. Can’t wait.

    Noticed that you’ve been in our old stomping ground…Archer…we used to drive through there…and Live Oak…I did laundry and got groceries there when we first went on disability and lived in Mayo (1980-81). Memories! Our best memories were in Tice…just outside Ft. Myers where we pastored for 4 years…and Sharon (our youngest) was born. We visited there in 2001 at Christmastime.

    Another bright note…I’ve just in the last few months been singing in a trio…thanx to Lucille’s teaching us how to sing the tenor an octave higher …what a blessing we had growing up in Selma Church! Lots of fond memories there too. Our church’s pastor is a graduate of Asbury Seminary…Tom Harrison…and we have an older people’s choir. We had about 125 or more at one time but have gone through a change in directors and pianists so we are just getting “back in the saddle” in January. All the members are 55 and older. It’s a wonderful concept and a way to utilize the talents of our seniors.

    Again, it was great to “touch base” with you again. Trusting you’ll have travel mercies as you go from place to place. Blessings on you and yours during this great season. “Hi” to all the Barretts when you see them!

    luv u,


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